In the Monday edition of the New York Times, Margo Kaplan, a Rutgers-Camden law professor, and New York University and Harvard graduate, said pedophiles should not be criminalized because pedophilia is a disease, not a crime.
"One can live with pedophilia and not act on it," Kaplan, said, according to the Times. Kaplan is a former lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union.
In the op-ed piece, Kaplan insists that pedophiles don't necessarily turn out to be child molesters and that pedophilia is not a choice, they are born that way.
"Tragically, the roughly 1 percent of people who are sexually attracted to children] must hide their disorder from everyone they know - or risk losing educational and job opportunities, and face the prospect of harassment and even violence," Kaplan wrote.
Kaplan goes further and insists criminal law should be changed so that pedophiles are only stigmatized or denied jobs if law school graduates agree that they pose a "direct threat" to children.
According to the DailyCaller, the graduates would be paid to argue whether the hiring of a particular pedophile for a particular job is a direct threat to particular children.
"The direct-threat analysis rejects the idea that [prospective] employers can rely on generalizations; they must assess the specific case and rely on evidence, not presuppositions," Kaplan writes in the column.
"Acknowledging that pedophiles have a mental disorder, and removing the obstacles to their coming forward and seeking help, is not only the right thing to do, but it would also advance efforts to protect children from harm."
In PhillyMag.com, Kaplan says a pedophile is "a person with an intense and recurrent sexual attraction to prepubescent children," and cites the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, which defines pedophilia as a mental disorder if it causes "marked distress or interpersonal difficulty."